MAGA Influencers Are Sold on This Grifty Wellness Company

A gaggle of Trumpworld-linked investors and disreputable medical professionals are hawking a Goop-like lifestyle brand—complete with supplements, podcasts, tele-health, and even a dating service—to conservative audiences with the help of far-right influencers, The Daily Beast has discovered.

When defeated Arizona gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake interviewed Eric Trump in October for her webcast on America First News, her sponsor twice interrupted the discussion to address the dilemma of right-wing alternative medicine enthusiasts.

“You know we’re always looking for the best health and wellness products to give us an edge,” the promo said. “But if we eliminate businesses that have gone woke, don’t know how many genders there are, or force mandated vaccines on their employees, there are frighteningly few companies that we can support.”

Fortunately, as the ad continued, “that’s where The Wellness Company comes in.”

According to LinkedIn, The Wellness Company is the child of an unlikely pairing: Foster Coulson, scion of a Canadian logging and aviation dynasty—and Dave Lopez, who online profiles identify as a veteran not just of the Navy SEALs but of mercenary firm Blackwater and scandal-plagued anti-sex trafficking group Operation Underground Railroad. The duo did not respond to questions from The Daily Beast, and The Wellness Company and its affiliates did not answer or even acknowledge repeated queries by phone and email.

Neither Lopez’s service, nor the millions of dollars in federal contracts the U.S. Department of Agriculture has lavished on the Coulson family firm has stopped them from profiting off fears about “big government.” The Wellness Company has taken the anodyne aesthetics and “holistic” bromides typical of faddish health sites and infused them with the engulfing paranoia of the prepper movement. Failed House candidate and Internet conspiracy theorist Laura Loomer made this all-but explicit in a pitch for the company embedded in a livestream of a Trump rally in October.

“You need to make sure that you and your family are prepared for the pandemic, or any kind of bioweapon, or biohazard threat,” warned Loomer, who added that the company’s sponsorship had enabled her to attend the Florida event. “I have the Wellness kit myself. It has ivermectin, it has an emergency supply of antibiotics, and all types of medications you would need if you and your family found yourselves locked down unable to leave your home, to go see medical professionals in the event of a catastrophic emergency.”

“We have Iran and China salivating at the mouth, ready to attack us, and you want to make sure you and your family are prepared,” she continued.

Meanwhile, The Wellness Company’s “chief scientific officer” is Dr. Peter McCullough, a cardiologist who rose to prominence during the COVID-19 pandemic for spreading misinformation about vaccines and treatments. A hero in anti-vaxx circles, McCullough has falsely claimed COVID-19 vaccines have killed thousands of Americans, and advocated the use of ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine to treat the virus.

In an appearance on right-wing radio host John Fredericks’s show Outside The Beltway in February 2023, McCullough said the newly-launched Wellness Company offered “detoxification” guidance for those who regretted getting the COVID-19 vaccine.

“This is a wonderful solution for people who want independent healthcare that’s not under any type of direction of a health system or government agencies or state agencies,” McCullough told Fredericks.

Derek Beres, co-author of Conspirituality: How New Age Conspiracy Theories Became a Health Threat, and co-host of the Conspirituality podcast, described the company as a “prolific grift.”

“They exemplify exactly what we’ve covered on Conspirituality for years,” Beres told the Daily Beast. “They create or continue to disseminate misinformation, create that fear, build up a network and then sell solutions to them, in this case in the form of telehealth and supplements.”

“[McCullough] is probably one of the worst grifters I’ve seen in this space because he will just make things up, constantly sharing that data about vaccines, and then pitching this Nattokinase-like solution, which is really what they lead with, when they’re trying to promote their supplements,” Beres continued. “I think they realize that their following is not scientifically literate. And so they lean on that to create this mirage of fear. And then they can sell solutions.”

In August, the American Board of Internal Medicine moved to permanently revoke McCullough’s certification for making flagrantly false about COVID-19 treatments. But this didn’t stop misinformation superspreader and publishing industry laughingstock Naomi Wolf from calling the cardiologist—one of a slew of The Wellness Company brass she has featured and promoted—“my personal hero” in a Nov. 4 chat on her Rumble channel.

McCullough did not respond to repeated inquiries about how he formed a relationship with The Wellness Company, and whether the business has granted him any stake, stipend, or compensation to date.

Accompanying the cardiologist on The Wellness Company’s “medical board” are Dr. Harvey Risch, a cancer epidemiologist who has desperately sought to prove that hydroxychloroquine cures COVID-19, most notably through what Dr. David Gorski, professor of surgery at Wayne State University and managing editor of the blog Science-Based Medicine, described as “one of the dumbest studies I’ve ever seen.” Risch’s own colleagues at Yale denounced and debunked his claims in an August 2020 letter.

The company’s “Chief Academic Officer” is Richard Amerling, who also served as a medical director for America’s Frontline Doctors (AFLDS), a COVID pseudoscience group composed of fringe physicians that imploded when its founder, Simone Gold, was accused of misappropriating funds. Amerling has long advocated for a series of conservative causes, including penning editorials against abortion and ObamaCare. In January, he appeared at “COVID-19 Pandemic-Response Harms Conference” in Wenatchee, Washington where he “took the stage and slammed transgenderism, woke ideology and Critical Race Theory,” according to the Wenatchee World.

Amerling did not respond to a request for comment.

Additionally, addiction specialist-turned-radio “love doctor” Dr. Drew Pinsky joined the rogues’ gallery in November after The Wellness Company sponsored his show for several months. (“Dr. Drew fans save 10% at checkout with coupon code DREW,” according to TWC website.)

Pinksy did not respond to a request for comment asking about his role at the company.

Meanwhile, The Wellness Company’s leadership team includes a self-described “doctor of acupuncture and Chinese medicine,” as well as Trump administration science advisor Paul Alexander, who advocated combating COVID-19 via herd immunity—writing in one infamous memo “we want them infected.”

Nowadays, Alexander—who did not answer repeated requests for comment—confines himself to penning Substack posts with titles like “Archilles [sic] shrugged! The type of Norse, Viking, Rambo Silverback warrior American military fighting force is known for, is in trouble! When it is now needed most! Look at who is running our military!” and “WORLD WAR III?: ‘One of US Navy’s Largest Submarines Armed with Nuclear Missiles Arrives in the Middle East’; the Ohio-class, can wipe complete nations off the face of the earth, much nuclear power.”

Fortunately, The Wellness Company offers a variety of products for such doomsday scenarios, including a Medical Emergency Kit and a COVID Emergency Kit, both priced at $299.99 ($249.99 for members). The COVID kit contains both ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine, while the Emergency kit offers ivermectin alongside a variety of antibiotics and anti-nausea medication.

When a train derailment in East Palestine, Texas, in February made headlines across the country, and spawned a series of right-wing conspiracy theories, The Wellness Company was quick to use the disaster to hawk its products. The company said residents of East Palestine could “register to receive free acute virtual care with a licensed doctor or medical provider,” Mother Jones reported. At the time, the company did not share any details of what services it was offering those affected.

The company’s main products are a series of supplements, for both adults and children. The supplement that appears most often in podcast ads and partnerships with influencers is their “Spike Support Formula,” marketing with the tagline: “Remember the pre-COVID days?” At $64.99 per bottle, the blend of “nattokinase and dandelion root” promises to provide “natural immune support.”

Nattokinase is an enzyme derived from the Japanese dish natto, composed of fermented soybeans—that forbidden legume of the far-right. The realization the supplement contained the supposedly vitality-sapping East Asian staple appalled one overwrought reviewer.

“This gave me terrible insomnia! I am sure it was the nattokinase, which is soy. I am hoping I can get my money back,” the perturbed customer wrote.

A company representative responded, confirming that “nattokinase is indeed derived from non-GMO soy.”

But the whole formula is “pure bullshit,” according to Science-Based Medicine’s Dr. Gorski.

Gorski argued that “wellness” as a cultural phenomenon always carried a strong dose of anti-vaccine sentiment. And while elements of its ideology date to German back-to-nature schemes popular among the Nazis, in the United States, he noted the concept was initially associated with what he described as “granola-crunching lefties.”

“It’s one of those words that seems so innocuous, on the surface. But it’s always been associated with dubious medicine,” he asserted. “It implies more natural kind of things, lack of pharmaceutical interventions, dreaded procedures, conventional medicine.”

“Wellness” contaminated the mainstream with the help of such celebrity influencers as Gwyneth Paltrow and Dr. Mehmet Oz, both of whom Gorski blamed for using their personal brands and platforms to promote “quackery.” Now The Wellness Company has fused Goop-y pseudoscience with the stars and obsessions of the far-right, and—with the venture’s pricey telehealth and curated monthly supplement packages—the hyper-lucrative model of concierge medical practices, which Gorski says “always had a little bit of woo about them, for marketing purposes.”

“It’s to the point where I think the term is irrevocably tainted,” Gorski argued. “‘Wellness’ turns into a cult of purity—where you’re not contaminated with modernity.”

It’s that aspect of “wellness” that has made it a perfect moniker for an outfit harping on suspicion of vaccines and hawking dubious supplements. And it has made The Wellness Company an ideal match for its “sister site,” the dating platform Unjected.

Unjected first launched in 2021 as a project of two Hawaii women, Shelby Hosana and Heather Pyle, who aspired to create “a platform of like-minded humans that are unvaccinated from COVID-19.” In an early interview, Hosana, then using the last name Thomson, voiced anxiety that “spike proteins introduced into the body through the vaccine could be transmitted between partners through the breath or passed on through sweat.” (There is no evidence for this).

Unjected soon got kicked off Apple’s app store, and then suffered the humiliation of Internet security researchers discovering it had left the personal data of some 3,500 users completely exposed. Then, according to a press release posted to the Unjected website, the founders had a falling out with their web developer and found themselves locked out of their payment processing service—compelling them to form a relationship with Coulson and The Wellness Company.

Unjected’s bright orange site underwent a redesign to match The Wellness Company’s clean, soothing whites and blues, and small print at the bottom notes Unjected is now “powered by The Wellness Company.” The two firms now share a virtual mailbox in Boca Raton, and Thomson boosts The Wellness Company’s products on social media. New users must undergo a “verification” process that involves booking an appointment with the “Unjected Clinic,” also “powered by The Wellness Company.”

Hosana told the Daily Beast that people drawn to the dating site are those who “did not participate in the gene altering, experimental mRNA disaster that was thrust on humanity these last few years.”

“We proudly partnered with Foster Coulson and The Wellness Company earlier this year, as we share the same values and vision for creating parallel systems outside of the corrupt and dying big pharma/medical establishment,” Hosana told The Daily Beast in a statement. “All of our sensitive data is stored behind TWC’s HIPAA compliant servers to ensure privacy and security for our members. Our partnership allows us to verify Unjected members’ identities, genders and unvaccination [sic] status by a TWC/Unjected medical professional. During this process, members attest by affidavit that they understand that is sexual misconduct to lie to Unjected, or their partner, about their vaccination status.”

“The verification process is for the safety of the community and to make sure that the integrity of the human genome is passed along to future generations, unmodified,” she continued.

The service is free for women, but costs a suggestive $69 for men.

“Serious men pay the bill. To command respect from a real woman, you have to be worth respecting. Women don’t submit themselves to insecure and indecisive men,” the site asserts. “If finding your woman isn’t worth $69, then enjoy your Bud Light.”

A gallery of stock photos of models further titillates uninoculated conservative Casanovas with such shibboleths as “Unjected women know how to handle your gun” and “Unjected women are ready to repopulate.”

Yet juxtaposed over these are some decidedly unconservative innuendos: the site promises female users that “Unjected men stand up for your rights—and go down on your delights” and punctuates the claim “Unjected women are very selective about what they put in their bodies” with an eggplant emoji. Thomson recently posted a video to Instagram of herself wearing an LED display for a bra while Bloodhound Gang’s 1999 hit “The Bad Touch”—“you and me, baby, ain’t nothin’ but mammals/So let’s do it like they do on the Discovery Channel”—pumps in the background.

The exact structural relationship between Unjected and The Wellness Company is unclear. The Wellness Company describes them as “sister companies,” but Unjected remains registered in Thomson’s name in Hawaii. The Wellness Company, meanwhile, does not appear to be registered either as a company or a fictitious business name in Florida, and public records offer few clues about the corporate structure behind it.

However, Coulson and Lopez claim on LinkedIn to be co-founders of International Health Brands, which on its website lists The Wellness Company as one of several supplement lines it operates. Ironically, International Health Brands boasts on its webpage that the company is “committed to the principles of diversity and inclusion”—two of the three initials DEI so abominated in right-wing circles. International Health Brands did not answer questions about its HR policies, or how much of The Wellness Company it controls.

Also unclear is how any of these companies connect to another Coulson-Lopez venture: Cold Harbour, Inc. Florida corporate filings show that entity uses the same Boca Raton virtual address as The Wellness Company and Unjected—but its treasurer is Ken Cuccinelli, the former Virginia attorney general Trump sought to install as acting director of United States Citizenship and Immigration Services in 2019, a role whose duties he executed until a judge slapped down the appointment the following year.

Cuccinelli did not reply to repeated entreaties from The Daily Beast that he explain Cold Harbour’s function and how he wound up in business with Coulson and Lopez.

The post MAGA Influencers Are Sold on This Grifty Wellness Company appeared first on The Daily Beast.

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